Seeking a replacement for a 3-terminal "light delay" component for my
ancient Overhead Door model 100 garage door opener (or something I can
work with to replace the original component) .
This component is ceramic element wrapped with fragile nichrome that's
supposed to heat up a nearby bimetal contact that closes and lights the
lamps for a while after the moter reaches its limit.
The factory stopped making this model and the component back in 82 so
if anyone has an old one they'd sell the part from, or can suggest an
alternative to a new garage door operator, please let me know.
Well, if you are really gung ho about sparing no expense to fix that old
timer, and want to stick with the olde technology, they still do make
thermal time delay relays.
You could use one of these, ordered with a 115 volt heater, a time delay
you specify (from 5 seconds to 3 minutes), and a rated life of 100,000
operations, which means if the door is used twice a day, it should last
you at least 136.89 years, including leap years. <G>
Oh yeah, looks like you'll also need an octal "tube socket" to plug it
into. I could sport you one of those, I've got plenty left over from the
Otherwise, get one of the youngsters to learn 'ya about solid state time
: Howard Goldstein wrote:
: > Seeking a replacement for a 3-terminal "light delay" component for my
: > ancient Overhead Door model 100 garage door opener (or something I can
: > work with to replace the original component) .
: > This component is ceramic element wrapped with fragile nichrome that's
: > supposed to heat up a nearby bimetal contact that closes and lights the
: > lamps for a while after the moter reaches its limit.
: > The factory stopped making this model and the component back in 82 so
: > if anyone has an old one they'd sell the part from, or can suggest an
: > alternative to a new garage door operator, please let me know.
: > Thanks!
: Well, if you are really gung ho about sparing no expense to fix that old
: timer, and want to stick with the olde technology, they still do make
: thermal time delay relays.
I probably went too far with this old POS to begin with, just about
everything in it has been replaced from the starter cap to the motor
to the open/close. All except for the stupid timer that's at issue now.
: Oh yeah, looks like you'll also need an octal "tube socket" to plug it
: into. I could sport you one of those, I've got plenty left over from the
Thanks for the offer! Not sure I could mount it in the case though.
Your reply gave me some good search terms I'll poke around with
in case a guardian angel doesn't have one of these or a mindless
replacement for same laying around
: Otherwise, get one of the youngsters to learn 'ya about solid state time
: delay relays.
Any particular technology I should look for in these? The primary
has to pass a good 10 amps worth of 110v inductive motor load, and the
lamps ought to stay on for 2 or 3 minutes, maybe 240 watts
on the lights (includes a 2x safety factor)(why do i care about safety
I dont know, my sanity is gone from playing with this darned thing
de n2wx Howard
You said it was "fragile" nichrome. Are you sure the moter current flows
*through* it? It'd have to be fairly heavy (like maybe #22 wire or so.)
to handle that much current. Guess it depends on your meaning of
Methinks maybe that heater's in parallel with the motor and has 115
volts *across* it when the motor is running.
: You said it was "fragile" nichrome. Are you sure the moter current flows
: *through* it? It'd have to be fairly heavy (like maybe #22 wire or so.)
: to handle that much current. Guess it depends on your meaning of
: "fragile" though.
: Methinks maybe that heater's in parallel with the motor and has 115
: volts *across* it when the motor is running.
I think it's in series with the motor since the motor runs with the
nichrome bypassed. (double checking) Unfortunately it really is in
series with it. I overstated the size of the motor though, he's jsut
a little drawing 4.2A. FWIW the nichrome might have been more manly
in the past but he be be flimsied now, maybe from wear and heat. 25
years old, it's ribbon nichrome about 1/16" wide wrapped 4 times
almost like a low resistance wirewound on ceramic mold *that itself is
on a flexy bimetal thingie*, perfectly designed to crack the ceramic
and flex the nichrome with the repeated flexing it's designed to do!!!
I'm intrigued by everyone's suggestions -- John M's, Ken W's, and
your's - to look at alternative lighting. Has anyone had luck with the
infrared or ultrasonic wall switch replacements when used to control
fluorescent fixtures? I have 240W worth of fluroescent tube lighting
connected to a wall switch that couldn't be any better placed for a
sensor of either kind, it's perfect. A bit spooked by the warnings
about fluorescents through triac control, the google it scare me, but
tempted to run over to the borg and try something.
: your's - to look at alternative lighting. Has anyone had luck with the
: infrared or ultrasonic wall switch replacements when used to control
: fluorescent fixtures? I have 240W worth of fluroescent tube lighting
Gauche to followup to myself I know, but in the nature of an update, I
visited the borg early this afternoon to look for a motion sensing
wall switch and came away with the borg meeting my expectations:
Disappointed, as usual. All of their in-stock motion sensing switches
are essentially fluorescent-incompatible. Sadly, the all-in-one
fixtures are quite large assemblies that'd make the garage look like a
sally port. (My big box place is probably stocked less well than
everyone else's though)
With Rich's post holding the promise of an exact replacement for my
dusty old ancient obsolete operator I'm probably not going to need a
fluorescent-compatible motion light switch (but if anyone has had any
good luck with them please let me know what you used)
I appreciate all of your comments and advice. Thank you!
Almost thought I had one for you Howard, but not quite.
I found this one in my "hell box" tonight.
It's a garage door light timer from the right era, but the winding
resistance is 500 ohms, and that'd certainly never do for going in
series with the motor.
It's probably what triggered me into thinking yours might actually go in
parallel with the motor in your opener.
Fer the heck of it I put line voltage across the coil and it heated up
and the bimetal bent so the contacts closed in less than a second. They
stayed closed for about 45 seconds after I unpowered the heater.
Good luck, I hope you get the right kind from Rich.
Also, FWIW the motion detectors in our office building johns are each
controlling a 4*40 watt flourescent pan. They look pretty much like
round smoke detectors mounted on the ceiling. Course fer all I know they
may be controlling relays which switch power to the the flourescents;
that much I'm not going to tear the place up to find out.
: Almost thought I had one for you Howard, but not quite.
: I found this one in my "hell box" tonight.
: It's a garage door light timer from the right era, but the winding
: resistance is 500 ohms, and that'd certainly never do for going in
: series with the motor.
That *was* close...it's looks better engineered to last longer than
the one that goes into my garage door opener operator to boot. I
shouldn't be so insulting about the one in my operator because it did
manage to hold up ~20 yrs and has a clever feature (whatever....it is
still very fragile)
On mine, on startup the motor powered in series through a nichrome
ribbon much thicker than the one from your device and with fewer
turns. Where it may be different: It reaches red-hot in about 3
seconds, then after another 4 or 5 seconds the bimetal thingie inside
of the ceramic the nichrome is wrapped around starts bends enough
to cause two circuits to close - one for the lights, and cleverly, one
that bypasses the motor current around the nichrome.
For the last 4 days or so my clumsy repair to is somehow letting ot
work again; I don't think the solder job I did to connect the break in
the nichrome did anything (can one even solder to nichrome? When it
heated up did it melt off whatever solder I did manage to get in
there?) but a good solid crimping of the cleaned ends of the broken
ribbon together seems to have done the trick for now and hopefully
it'll stay intact for another day or two until the replacement
I really appreciate everyone's comments, advice, and looking in their
junkboxes to help a fella out. Have a great weekend all!
As to soldering nichrome, the answer is yes, you can
solder it pretty well, should the need arise to repair
a toaster :)
Clean the ends well, make as good a mechanical connection
as you can (remembering that sharp bends create hot spots).
Then use _acid_ flux, and solder. Clean it up well with
baking soda, and you should be good.
Remember to clean your iron well before using it on electronics
This just occurred to me. How about using a cheap ultrasonic motion
detector switch to turn on the regular garage lights when it sees the
door move? They turn off after an adjustable delay. Our office has them
in the common area johns and they flick on as soon as you push the door
in a few inches.
They also remind you that you've sat on the pot long enough reading and
it's time to get back to work; The lights go out and you have to wave
your arms around above the stall door to get them on again. <G>
Ultrasonic might work. What I used was one of the wide-angle thermal
units that replace a standard light switch and which controls the main
ceiling light in the garage. When it is even slightly dim in the garage
it will "see" me when I enter the garage from any direction. And it will
definitely "see" the heat from the Miata when I pull in of an evening.
Of course the switch can still be set to come on and stay on (or stay
off permanently) but normally it is set to keep the light on for 15
minutes. Cost something like $12 at the borg and definitely easier than
messing with the innards of my antique pre-1980 Craftsman garage door
How about doing away with it (the light, not the opener)
and replacing it instead for a very few dollars with
something (imho) far better ?
Consider installing one of those yard "security" lights,
that turn on when anyone/anything approaches, and remain on
for a few minutes?
Advantages - it can be mounted anywhere in your garage,
far better than dead center over the car roof. It will
come on if you open the walk in door after dark. Some, if
not all, can accept two reflector bulbs, lighting far
better. It can be forced on to provide regular lighting,
ie working on the car or whatever. It provides a tiny
bit of security - maybe a deterent if someone should
snoop around or try to get into your garage (even more
valuable if you have an attached garage) And they cost
incredibly little - I've seen them on sale for as little
as 5 bucks (canadian)
Just for your consideration.
I have the three teminal bi-metal time delay switch for your unit. They
sell for $14.00 plus shipping. Use the contact link at my site
http://www.garagedoorsupply.com/contact.shtml and I will send you the
: What about using one of those cheap timers used to keep a bathroom extractor
: fan running for a few minutes after the light is switched off?
I'm not sure I've even seen something dedicated to that. Are those
wind up timer switches on a lightswitch panel?
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.